CORDILLERA policemen on Thursday overrun five clandestine marijuana plantation sites in Mountain Province and Benguet where they uprooted and destroyed an estimated P40 million worth of fully-grown cannabis plants and seedlings, a report to Philippine National Police (PNP) chief General Guillermo Lorenzo T. Eleazar said.
Cordillera Police Regional Office director Brigadier Gen. Ronald O. Lee said an estimated 152,000 pieces of marijuana plants were found planted in three areas estimated to be more than 1.5 hectares in Sitio Paras, Bgy. Saclit in Sadanga municipality.
Lee said his men torched the illegal crops valued at nearly P30.4 million on-site.
A similar operation in Bgy. Kayapa in Bakun, Benguet and Bgy. Tacadang in Kibungan municipality led in the destruction of nearly P500,000 worth of cannabis plants.
“These operations are part of our Oplan: Herodotus aimed at searching for and destroying all clandestine marijuana farms in Cordillera region as ordered by Gen. Eleazar,” Lee said.
The Cordillera police were joined by operatives from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency and the PNP Special Action Force during the conduct of the marijuana eradication drive.
The official said that operations are still underway to identify, arrest and file criminal charges against the maintainers of the marijuana sites.
Marijuana, next to shabu, remains the second most abused drug in the Philippines. Grown abundantly in the cold mountain ranges of Cordillera region, a kilo of marijuana normally fetches a price of P5,000 in the underground market.